(Possible) Insider Trading: Acxiom Style


Bloomberg reports that the volume at which Acxiom—who recently agreed to be acquired for $3 billion by two private equity firms—has been trading indicates that some buyers “knew more than the normal trader did.” Which is a nice way of saying: “There are thieves among us.”
On May 10, the number of call options trader in Acxiom shot up to 1,400, ten times the average of 135 from the previous twenty days. 1,300 contracts traded on May 14 and on the 15th and 16th. Investors had the right to buy the most actively trader contract at $25 until May 19, with the price of those contract increasing fivefold since yesterday to $2.50 at 4 pm ($1,000 on a contract two days ago is worth $10,000 today). The May $25 calls all occurred during the last seventy minutes of trading yesterday.
Michael McCarty, who looks for unexplained options patterns told Bloomberg, “They knew the exact date, if not what time, the announcement was going to be made. In 72 hours these things would have expired worthless.” Stay tuned to find out which husband and wife team will go down first.
Acxiom Options Trading Jumped Before Buyout News [Bloomberg]